New York City Hall
What to watch for this week in New York politics:
Tuesday is primary election day in New York. In the city, the two most high-profile races are Democratic primaries for Queens District Attorney and City Council District 45 in Brooklyn, the second special election for that seat in two months. There are also a number of judicial elections and party position votes. [READ: Upcoming Elections: What's on the June 25 Ballot in New York City]
Mayor Bill de Blasio will appear in the first Democratic presidential primary debate on Wednesday night in Miami, Florida. De Blasio was in South Carolina campaigning this weekend. The mayor, who has been polling at zero or one percent in the crowded 20-plus candidate field, will get a chance to introduce himself to many Democratic voters tuning in, as well as to make some additional waves, as he has been in criticizing former Vice President and early polling leader Joe Biden.
Closer to home, it's a busy week in New York politics, as we continue to dissect the recently-completed state legislative session, and there's a long list of events on the docket, including a variety of hearings at the City Council, MTA Board meetings, LGBTQ Pride celebrations, and more -- see our day-by-day rundown below.
And further from home: Governor Cuomo said Monday he'll be heading to Israel on Wednesday for a trip that includes solidarity and trade aspects.
***Do you have events or topics for us to include in an upcoming Week Ahead in New York Politics?
The run of the week in detail:
Monday, June 23
At the City Council on Monday:
-At 10 a.m., the Committee on Transportation and the Committee on Oversight and Investigations will jointly hold an oversight hearing on the Taxi and Limousine Commission’s role in the taxi medallion debt crisis. Four new bills will also be heard, three of which concern increased regulation of medallion sales and lenders, while a fourth would mandate the creation of an Office of Financial Stability within the TLC to prevent future debt crises. [READ: Council to Examine City Role in 'Taxi Medallion Crisis']
-At 1 p.m., the Committee on Women and Gender Equity will conduct an oversight hearing on the annual report on domestic violence initiatives, indicators, & factors, and will also discuss a resolution from new Council Member Farah Louis reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act.
-Also at 1 p.m., the Committee on Hospitals will meet to hold an oversight hearing on safe staffing ratios in hospitals. Additionally, several bills and resolutions will be discussed, including two bills from Council Member Mark Gjonaj to conduct a study on prolonged hospital wait times and to require the Department of Mental Health and Hygiene to better inform New York City residents of the emergency care facilities available to them.
-Also at 1 p.m., the Committee on Environmental Protection will conduct an oversight hearing on renewable energy. Several bills concerning renewable energy usage in the city will also be discussed, including two proposed pilot programs to power select districts using exclusively solar and geothermal energy.
State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli will be attending the RFK Human Rights Compass 2019 in Massachusetts from Monday until Wednesday.
Starting at 8:30 a.m. Monday, the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) will hold a series of committee and division meetings.
At 9 a.m. Monday, city schools Chancellor Richard Carranza will attend a pre-K stepping up ceremony and delivers brief remarks, at PS 68 Port Richmond School for Visionary Learning on Staten Island.
At 11 a.m. Monday in Harlem, City Comptroller Scott Stringer will host a press conference at NYC Mission Society.
At 11 a.m. Monday, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul will deliver a commencement address at Urban Assembly School for Criminal Justice, The New School University Center in Manhattan. At 12:15 p.m., Hochul will celebrate LGBTQ Pride Month with a visit to the recently-opened NYC WorldPride Welcome Center in Manhattan.
At 5:30 p.m. Monday, Public Advocate Jumaane Williams will speak at the Spring Creek Community School Graduation in Brooklyn, giving "the keynote speech at the graduation ceremony on themes of perseverance and overcoming obstacles."
At 6 p.m. on Monday, Civic Hall and the Participatory Budgeting Project will host “Democracy Beyond Elections: A New Deal for Our Broken Democracy.” Representatives from Ireland, Scotland, Madrid, and New York City will be in attendance to discuss “their experience with expanding or engaging with participatory democracy practices...Be inspired by how community and government leaders from these programs have used participatory democracy to equitably reshape government policy and spending on issues such as abortion, climate change, and transportation.”
At 6:30 p.m. Monday, State Senator John Liu, Chair of the Committee on New York City Education, will hold a community forum on school diversity and specialized high school admissions at the office of the Staten Island Borough President in conjunction with BP James Oddo.
At 6:30 p.m. Monday, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson will deliver remarks at the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center’s Garden Party in Manhattan.
Mayor de Blasio will make his weekly appearance on NY1's Inside City Hall on Monday in the 7 and 11 p.m. hours.
Tuesday, June 25
Tuesday is primary election day! Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. for primary elections across the city, including the Democratic primaries for Queens District Attorney and City Council District 45 in Brooklyn, among other mostly judicial elections. [READ: Upcoming Elections: What's on the June 25 Ballot in New York City]
At the City Council on Tuesday:
-At 10 a.m., the Committee on General Welfare will hold an oversight hearing on the Nicholas Scoppetta Children’s Center, as well as discuss a bill from Council Member Stephen Levin to require the Administration for Children’s Services to study the use of psychiatric medication for youth in foster care.
-At 1 p.m., the Committees on Education and Higher Education will hold a joint oversight hearing on teacher preparation and training.
-At 2 p.m., the Committee on Civil Service and Labor will hold an oversight hearing on pay inequity issues within the New York City Probation Department and the New York City Fire Department.
At 8 a.m. Tuesday at the New York Athletic Club, Crain’s Business Breakfast will host members of the City Council to “discuss how the council’s powers should change in the city charter revision, whether the council will take on a greater role in light of the mayor’s presidential campaigning and how they see the next race for speaker shaping up.” Council Members in attendance will be Joseph Borelli, Justin Brannan, Keith Powers, and Carlina Rivera. This event has been cancelled!
At 9 a.m. Tuesday at Baruch College, the Greenburger Center for Social and Criminal Justice will host the panel discussion “After Rikers: Course Change for People with Serious Mental Illness, Substance Abuse Disorders and Other Disabilities.” The discussion, hosted by Cheryl Roberts, will feature State Senator Brian Benjamin, Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark, Arizona State Representative Nancy Barto, Judges Steven Leifman and Matthew D’Emic, and author and columnist D.J. Jaffe.
Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza has four events Tuesday: he'll attend the Mott Hall graduation and deliver commencement address; join City Council Member Daneek Miller for a visit to PS 360 in Queens; attend the Academy of Innovative Technology graduation and deliver commencement address; and attend the Stonewall Scholars celebration and delivers brief remarks, at Yankee Stadium.
At 10 a.m. Tuesday, the New York City Board of Standards and Appeals will hold a public hearing to discuss projects all five boroughs.
At 10:30 a.m. Tuesday in Albany, the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics will hold an open meeting on regulating lobbying and ethics in New York, and will discuss annual financial disclosure statements and provide an update on lobbying applications.
At 6 p.m. Tuesday, the Association for a Better New York will host “What’s on Tap?” with State Senator Andrew Gounardes to discuss “his path to office, experiences in government, and vision for New York City.”
Also at 6 p.m. Tuesday, the New York City Commission on Gender Equity will host its Bronx Gender Equity Summit. “Summit participants [will] join small group discussions to help CGE identify ways to involve men and youth in the fight to advance gender equity; ensure greater gender diversity at all levels of public service; and prevent, reduce, eliminate gender based violence in all communities.”
Also at 6 p.m. Tuesday, the Manhattan GOP, in conjunction with Log Cabin Republicans of New York, will host “Pride Right: The biggest Pride celebration of LGBT + Ally conservatives in New York.” In attendance will be Andrea Catsimatidis, Chair of the Manhattan GOP; Jerri Ann Henry, National Executive Director of Log Cabin Republicans; and other elected officials.
Also at 6 p.m. Tuesday, City Comptroller Scott Stringer will host a celebration of World Pride and Stonewall’s 50th anniversary.
At 7 p.m. Tuesday, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson will throw out the ceremonial first pitch at at the New York Yankees Legacy of Pride Game at Yankee Stadium.
At 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Great Hall at Cooper Union, the Rent Guidelines Board will hold a public meeting to take its final vote on rent increases.
Wednesday, June 26
Governor Cuomo will head to Israel on Wednesday.
At the City Council on Wednesday:
-At 10 a.m., the Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises will meet.
-At 10:15 a.m., the Committee on Land Use will meet.
-At 1:30 p.m., the City Council will hold a stated meeting in the Council Chambers at which bills that have been voted through committee are passed by the full Council and new bills are introduced. Council Speaker Corey Johnson will hold a pre-stated meeting at about 12:30 p.m.
At 8 a.m. Wednesday, the Association for a Better New York will host a Boardroom Breakfast with Bradley Tusk, founder of Tusk Strategies and former campaign manager to Mayor Michael Bloomberg, to “discuss his career path, approach to political change, and the evolving political landscape in New York City.”
At 9 a.m. Wednesday, the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) will hold its monthly board meeting, preceded at 8:30 a.m. by an audit meeting.
At 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, the Community Service Society will hold a roundtable discussion on the most recent legislative session and its effects on individuals with conviction histories.
At 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, the New York City Board of Elections will hold a commissioners meeting.
On Wednesday at 5 p.m., this week’s Max & Murphy show will air on WBAI radio, 99.5 FM or wbai.org, and will feature reflections on the recently-completed state legislative year with State Senators Zellnor Myrie and Liz Krueger.
At 6 p.m. Wednesday, Roosevelt House and Hunter College’s LGBTQ Policy Center will host “Fifty Years After Stonewall Where Are We Now? Where Do We Go from Here?” “Four of the queer movement's outstanding thinkers, writers, and activists – Ann Pellegrini, Rich Benjamin, Chase Strangio, and Edmund White – will assess the movement's extraordinary accomplishments since 1969 and pinpoint its policy goals for the coming decade.”
Wednesday at 9 p.m. is the first of the two-night first Democratic presidential primary debates of the 2020 election cycle. Mayor Bill de Blasio will appear on Wednesday night, along with Senators Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker, and others.
Thursday, June 27
At the City Council on Thursday:
-At 10 a.m., the Committee on Consumer Affairs and Business Licensing will meet to discuss three bills aiming to limit the use of single-use utensils and beverage containers in restaurants.
-Also at 10 a.m., the Committee on Sanitation and Solid Waste Management will meet to discuss several bills relating to waste hauling and the trade waste industry.
-Also at 10 a.m., the Committee on Public Safety will meet to discuss six bills on disparate subjects. One bill aims to provide safe locations for internet-arranged purchase exchanges to take place; another bans the sending of sexually explicit images as a means of harassment; a third prohibits law enforcement from staging “perp walks;” two concern stricter laws and increased reporting on 3D-printed guns and “ghost guns;” and a final bill would provide notice to minors included in the criminal groups database.
-At 1 p.m., the Committee on Housing and Buildings will meet to discuss several new pieces of legislation concerning tenant protections, including bills to limit fees and increasing regulation of security deposits.
-Also at 1 p.m., the Committee on Small Business will hold an oversight hearing on the changing market for food delivery.
-Also at 1 p.m., the Committee on Cultural Affairs, Libraries and International Intergroup Relations will hold an oversight hearing on “New York City’s LGBTQ+ Community and the Arts: Resources, Opportunities and Support.”
At 8 a.m. Thursday, the Citizens Budget Commission will host its Trustee Breakfast at the Yale Club, with City Comptroller Scott Stringer as guest speaker. “At the breakfast, Comptroller Stringer will discuss City fiscal policy, including the Comptroller’s Agency Watch List and the need for rainy day reserves, and how to promote New York City’s competitiveness, among other topics.”
At 9 a.m. Thursday at City Hall, "Over 100 environmental justice, safe streets, and small business advocates, sanitation workers, and City Council members will rally on the steps of City Hall before a hearing on legislation to reform the private carting industry. The Commercial Waste Zones Bill, sponsored by City Council Member Antonio Reynoso, would overhaul an industry that is responsible for more than two dozen traffic and workplace deaths in the last decade. The legislation will cut commercial garbage truck traffic in the city by 60% by limiting one private sanitation company to each zone of the city. The Department of Sanitation will select waste haulers for each zone through a competitive bidding process that prioritizes fair prices for small businesses, good environmental practices, and high safety standards. The rally will be followed by a hearing on the legislation in the City Council Committee on Sanitation and Solid Waste Management."
At 9 a.m. Thursday, the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute will host “Charting the Future of Urban Agriculture in New York City,” an Urban Food Policy Forum. “As the City Council considers requiring a comprehensive urban agriculture plan, this forum will explore what such a plan should include and how the city should go about crafting it.” The forum will be moderated by Nevin Cohen, Research Director at the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute. Speakers will include Raymond Figueroa, Jr., Taconic Faculty Fellow at the Pratt Center for Community Development; Aziz Dekhan, Executive Director of NYC Community Garden Coalition; Onika Abraham, Director of Farm School NYC; and Ricky Stephens, Co-Founder at AgTech X.
At 10:45 a.m. in Utica, State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli will attend a ribbon cutting ceremony at the Doyle Building.
At 6 p.m. on Thursday, the New York City Commission on Gender Equity will host its Staten Island Gender Equity Summit. “Summit participants [will] join small group discussions to help CGE identify ways to involve men and youth in the fight to advance gender equity; ensure greater gender diversity at all levels of public service; and prevent, reduce, eliminate gender based violence in all communities.”
Also at 6 p.m. Thursday, City Council Member Diana Ayala, in collaboration with U.S. Representative Adriano Espaillat, will host a Census 2020 Information Session.
At 6:30 p.m. Thursday, City & State NY will host its 2019 Pride Power 100 celebrating the LGBTQ community, “gathering top brass from advocacy, academia, media, business and beyond for a networking opportunity you do not want to miss.” Speakers will include Corey Johnson, Speaker of the City Council; Emma Wolfe, chief of staff to Mayor Bill de Blasio; Alphonso David, counsel to Governor Andrew Cuomo; and Thomas Duane, former state senator.
At 7 p.m. Thursday, the Museum of the City of New York will host “Whose Streets? Reclaiming NYC for Cyclists,” a panel discussion with “urban planners, biking advocates and experts about how New York City could achieve a shared “right to the road” for everyone, on two wheels or otherwise.” Speakers will include Ydanis Rodriguez, City Council Member; Judi Desire, founder of Uptown & Boogie Bicycle Advocacy; Helen Ho, co-founder of the Biking Public Project; and Adam Mansky of Transportation Alternatives. The discussion will be moderated by Streetsblog editor-in-chief Gersh Kuntzman.
Thursday at 9 p.m. is the second of the two-night first Democratic presidential primary debate of the 2020 election cycle. New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand will appear on Thursday night, along with former Vice President Joe Biden, Senators Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris, and others.
Friday, June 28
At 8 a.m. Friday, Be Social Change will host “Women’s Leadership Breakfast – Reshaping America’s Political Landscape by Elevating Women Leaders,” featuring speaker Erin Vilardi, founder and CEO of VoteRunLead.
At 10 a.m. on Friday, Mayor Bill de Blasio may make his weekly appearance on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show.
Sunday will mark the official New York City Pride March, celebrating the LGBTQ+ community and the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots. The march begins at noon; many elected officials from around the city and state are expected to attend.
by Joey Fox and Ben Max